Thursday, February 24, 2011

Sleep deprivation, suppose it's preparing me for life with a newborn...

I'm tired. I'm doing well, but I am having trouble sleeping. I woke up before 5 a.m. this morning and finally gave up on sleep at 6. I fell asleep after midnight (I was in bed by 11:15), woke up at 12:45, again at 2:15, again at 3:00, again at 4:00, and then again a little before 5. It helps that we have frequent night visitors named Riley and Ayden. And that Brent's alarm goes off at 4.

I am not sure if you remember that in my previous pregnancies I had this recurring nightmare that was very vivid and a half asleep, half awake nightmare I had trouble waking myself from? Often Brent had to wake me up, and once when he wasn't here I fell out of bed before I woke up from it. The nightmare has a large spider (or sometimes several) descending from my bedroom ceiling towards or onto my face. Sometimes the spider is larger than my face, sometimes it is average sized. Brent usually wakes up to me thrashing around trying to get out from under this spider, and he wakes me up.
My first pregnancy I just thought it was a weird pregnancy side effect.
My second pregnancy I put 2 and 2 together and realized that when I didn't eat a bedtime snack, the nightmare visited, so I attributed it to hypoglycemia, which can sometimes cause weird, vivid, or nightmarish dreams (my endocrinologist disagreed but then my diabetic nurse mentioned it so I think my endo was just plain wrong). It's a rare side effect but it can happen.
This third pregnancy I've had better control of things in general, and attribute the absolute absence of this stupid nightmare to my cinnamon supplements and general trend towards hyperglycemia as opposed to hypo.

Last night I had it again.
12:45, an hour and a half after my protein rich bedtime snack (so it was likely still being digested, NOT causing low blood sugar), I woke up to two spiders one big and the other small, descending from the ceiling to my face. Then I woke up again. (this is how the dream usually goes). But this time I guess I was close enough to falling asleep that I knew it was a dream before Brent woke up and before I was totally awake, so although I screamed and thrashed around and my heart pounded like I was dying (aside: yes, I know its ridiculous to have this reaction to spiders but if one is crawling on my foot I do feel like I'm about to die, I'm in that much danger), I yelled out "It's not real! It's not real!" and woke myself up. And Brent.

That was weird. 39 weeks into my third pregnancy, the dream returns.

It's not anxiety. I'm not anxious now that we're so close to the end, and there's no placenta previa, and I've been reading Ina May and feeling well supported by all of you and my family and my midwife. And I don't have this dream when I'm anxious. THOSE dreams are more like watching Ayden burn up in a fire while I'm strapped to the roof of a camper (true story: well, not the story, just that I did have this dream), or horrific car crashes with rollovers and my babies flying out the windows in all directions, or watching one of my kids drown: work related stuff. I've seen variations of all those situations and more, and they come back to haunt me when my anxiety is highest. Uncontrolled high anxiety, that is.

So what the heck is it?

Here's praying for a chance to nap today!!! Holy crikey.

One other thing: remember that I've had contractions and contractions and contractions for months? Now I'm wondering if they were low calcium. A few weeks ago I started having these horrific leg cramps, and all along I've had painful contractions especially when I lift heavy things, right? Well I KNOW calcium deficiency can cause these things, and calcium imbalances are more common in diabetic moms. I was taking calcium supplements but they were pretty crappy ones. Because of all my nausea I wasn't all that into swallowing more pills: but I haven't been nauseous for several months so I should have switched earlier. Once I got those leg cramps I went out and bought good quality calcium supplements in pill form and started taking good doses of those (Health First brand Calcium Magnesium Citrate, with vitamin D added: 18oo mg per day of calcium, 6oo mgs with each meal). Finally, the leg cramps went away, and the contractions too. Holy toledo. I should've done this months ago. What was I thinking? Oh yeah, my life is pretty busy.
It got lost in the fray.

Plus, I'm not so sure all that lifting was a great idea anyways. Lift, contractions. Don't lift, no contractions. Even with adequate calcium levels it was a good idea to stay away from work (feeling slightly guilty, obviously!), and how could I know at this point? I can't go back and take proper supplements and see if it works. I should've been taking these while breastfeeding anyways, I probably was deficient from before I even got pregnant. So much to learn, in life. I'm just glad I figured it out before going into labour, that would have sucked because calcium is necessary for efficient muscle contractions and minimizing lactic acid buildup. Less calcium=more pain in labour. More pain in all muscles, but more pain in labour too!

I just found out on Tuesday that there is a midwifery school being incorporated into the naturopathic school in our area: its open only to naturopathic students (bummer) but created by my midwife!! It starts in September. Hmmm, maybe I want to be a naturopath AND a midwife? It might take less time than waiting around for UBC to smarten up and accept me! Lol....
Plus, I love the marriage of naturopath and midwife~I've had that combination in two of my three midwives, and it has been an invaluable resource. Of course, Brent teases me that I singlehandedly support the naturopathic pharmacy at my midwife's office because every time I go I come home with some remedy or other. But they work! Jeepers.

Well, I should go get the boys ready for school now.

Baby should be 9 lbs, 12 oz now if my perinatologist was correct in his ultrasound measurements. I can birth that, right? Right? Feeling my pelvic bones squeak every time I think about it....
okay, maybe I'm a bit anxious about it sometimes! Tell me I can do this!


Caryn Ouwehand said...

9lbs 12oz is practically going to SHOOT out of you... I hope the midwife is a good catcher.

In terms of the Cal/Mag supplement, I totally agree with your thoughts on its role with contractions. I went on it in my pregnancy too (for leg cramps & muscle aches) and it made a huge difference.

You got this. Your baby is almost here. Make sure you pack a cape to wear to the hospital, because you will be a SUPERHERO on that labour ward. You show those other Beetches how its done.

Rachel Clear said...

You can do it!

Are you kidding me? OF COURSE you can do it!

nancy said...

you did fantastic with Rileys longer hard labour and this one is going to be speedy and easier! Talked to a mom last night - 18 hour labour with #1, 2 hrs with this one - delivered 10 min. after walking trough hospital doors! Hubby aware they came very close to a delivery in the car!
Also, 2 older experienced OB nurses told me this morning that a prelabour sign with a GD mom is a dramatic drop in blood sugars, so watch out for that.
love you

lori said...

That does sound weird for the spider dream to recur all the sudden. Who knew all the things calcium could fix.

You're rocking this birth like a roaring mama lioness. Sharp teeth and a low growl. Muscles at the ready. Thick paws steady on the ground. You've GOT it.